France country profile - SDGs and the environment

Briefing Published 02 Dec 2020 Last modified 02 Dec 2020
Photo: © Photo by Antoine Petitteville on Unsplash
France recognises that social inequalities go hand in hand with environmental inequalities. Therefore, public policies in France are designed to reduce exposure to risks and hazards such as pollution, extreme weather events and natural disasters (SDGs 3, 13), tackle fuel poverty (SDG 7) and facilitate access to nature for all (SDGs 3, 14 and 15). As regards environmental protection, other areas of action include combatting climate change (SDG 13), achieving green energy transition (SDG 7), and sustainable urbanisation (SDG 11) (Republic of France, 2016).

Acknowledging that further work remains to be done, especially in terms of maintaining healthy ecosystems and the sustainable management of natural resources, France will increase the funding for the French Development Agency (AFD) for sustainable development by EUR 4 billion by 2020, EUR 2 billion of which will be dedicated to climate change mitigation and adaptation (UN DESA, 2016).

France`s action towards SDGs with an environmental dimension focuses primarily on SDGs 3, 7, 11, 13, 14 and 15.  

France launched SDG action by designating an Interministerial Representative for Sustainable Development and General Commissioner for Sustainable Development, who led the preparation of the country’s first report on the SDGs. Subsequently, a national action plan was developed, underpinned by the following elements: a shared vision; government measures and public policy guidelines for sustainable development; assistance to economic players; and citizens’ ownership of the SDGs (Republic of France, 2016).

France engaged stakeholders through an online public consultation on its national action plan to ensure citizen involvement. The country also set up a committee of international experts to act as a knowledge source for developing the plan (Republic of France, 2016).

France submitted a VNR to the UN in 2016.

The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE) is responsible for the production and coordination of data with the statistical departments of the various French ministries. To produce national SDG indicators, the INSEE conducted a feasibility study involving all relevant ministries. The resulting list of 109 national SDG indicators was published in March 2017. The National Reform Programme, which reflects the goals of the 2030 Agenda (1) is consistent with these indicators (INSEE, 2017). The process involves a government assessment report to be submitted to the parliament each October (Republic of France, 2016).


(1) France’s version of the European Commission’s ‘Next steps for a sustainable European future - European action for sustainability’.



INSEE, 2017,Les indicateurs de suivi des objectifs de développement durable en France, Institut national de la statistique et des études économiques, France ( accessed 15 November 2017.

Republic of France, 2016,Report on the Implementation by France of the Sustainable Development Goals, France( accessed 6 October 2017. 

UN DESA, 2016, ‘Sustainable Development Goals Knowledge Platform’, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, New York, USA ( accessed 6 October 2017. 


The country assessments are the sole responsibility of the EEA member and cooperating countries supported by the EEA through guidance, translation and editing.


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